Labour has revealed under public questioning at the July council meeting and confirmed in the September Cabinet Budget Update papers that it intends to make the Green Waste service chargeable from 1 Jan - so the free service will end.
It cites budget reductions from central Government as the reason, although it is also true that the same budget paper reveals that they believe they have created sufficient headroom in the budget to allow them to deliver some of their manifesto pledges. So they can afford to run a free Festival this summer and pay consultants to run the so-called Fairness Commission, at a combined cost of well over £400,000. They can afford to pay consultants to write a report on how the borough’s firms can offer more flexible and home working and blow hundreds of thousands of pounds on the bureaucratic idiocy of a landlord licensing scheme, but they can’t afford to take away our green waste.
The scheme was launched borough wide by the Conservative administration of the council, which ran from 2006 to 2014. Prior to the Conservative administration, Labour had run the council for twelve years and left one of the worst recycling rates in the country, with a pathetic 16% of our waste recycled. Under the Conservatives, this rose to nearly half the waste recycled, but is set to fall again as the council withdraws vital services like the free Green Waste collection.
Croydon was recently shamed by being named the 7th worst place in the country for increasing fly tipping (its performance under Labour being much worse than under the previous Conservative administration) and the withdrawal of the free green waste service will make that much worse.
The previous Conservative administration investigated the possibility of moving to a paid-for service between 2010 and 2014 but came to the conclusion that it was doomed to failure and never put it forward as a proposal.
The council is asking residents to tell them whether they are prepared to pay for the service, but without telling them how much! The most likely outcome is that the council moves to a paid-for service but overestimates the take up, with a result that they both reduce the amount recycled and fail to make any saving. In the meantime, the fly tipping problem will get even worse. Residents may be tempted to put green waste in their landfill bin, with the result that the landfill tax the council pays will soar, adding further to the costs.
This is a crazy policy from our loony-left council which will end up costing us a packet.
Croydon Conservatives and GLA Member Steve O'Connell are running a petition to try to persuade our Labour council to change its mind, on www.surveymonkey.com/r/SaveCroydonGreenWaste
Leader fo the Opposition Cllr Tim Pollard (pictured on the left) says "This is another madcap policy from our Labour council which will most likely save very little. We intend to try to persuade them to think again and your help in both signing the petition and asking your friends and relatons to do the same will help in that".
Shadow Cabinet Member for Clean and Green, Cllr Phil Thomas (pictured right) says "We are already one of the worst performing boroughs in terms of the volume of fly tipping, with offences up massively in the time Labour has been in control. This is our loony-left council at its worst - making a decision which won't work and which will boost the fly tipping even more".